India has a long history of rug manufacturing. It started with Dhurrie rugs, but with the introduction of the Persian art of rug making by the Mughals, the carpet industry of India transformed utterly. Now, Indian rugs are coveted worldwide because of the artistic quality and the variety in design that is a result of all the different cultures in the country.
India has secured its place as one of the biggest manufacturers of rugs in the world. This position is not just the result of the sheer volume of the rugs produced but also their incredible quality.
Art at Every Corner
India may have learned the art of rug making from Persian artisans, but it has created its types of rugs using that knowledge. Different regions specialize in different types of rugs, according to the cultural influence on them.
This city was and still is the hub of rug making because it is where this art was introduced to rug manufacturers in India. Rugs made in this city are trendy because of the rich cultural heritage that can be seen in each of their fibres.
The city of Jaipur produces carpets that are as beautiful and intricately designed as the city itself. The Mughals first introduced rug-making in Rajasthan by bringing this art to Jaipur. The royals there adopted the practice of adorning their royal abodes with lush carpets.
Mughal Emperor Akbar brought many Persian weavers to teach rug-making in India. Some of them settled in the city of Bhadohi when they came upon it while traveling. They made it a carpet paradise, which means that the carpets made in the city were of such a quality that it came to be called the carpet city of India. The carpet is manufactured in this city or the prime source of income for the people living there. Bhadohi’s economy runs on carpet manufacturing.
The introduction of Kashmir to the art of rug-making was quite different from the cities mentioned above. Sultan Zainul Abidin, not Emperor Akbar, brought the Persian weavers in the 15th Century to Kashmir. The art, however, did not spread beyond the valley until after the Mughals brought it to different parts of their Empire.
The Obeetee is named after F.H. Oakley, F.H. Bowden, and J.A.L Taylor, who were British individuals visiting Mirzapur in Uttar Pradesh after World War I (also known as the Great War). There, they brought together some exceedingly skilled artisans, considered the finest in their fields, and named that group the OBT (as in Oakley, Bowden, and Taylor).
Since its establishment in 1920, Obeetee has achieved the kind of success that puts it as India’s oldest and largest rug manufacturing company. This company captures the style of the Mirzapur and Bhadohi carpets in their products. They have headquarters in Mirzapur, but the weavers work across seven villages from the comfort of their homes. Their hand-knotted carpets can have up to 300 knots per square inch. Other than these, their artisans also create carpets through flat weaving, hand tufting, and hand screening.
This company was established by NK Chaudhary in 1978, with just a handful of artisans at first. But as the business grew, it gave livelihood to many carpet weavers. It’s a business run by the Chaudhary family and has steadily made profits. A good chunk of the profit comes from exporting the carpets across several countries (around 60), like the US, Germany, Japan, and more. This makes them one of the top rug exporters in India.
The company headquarters are in Jaipur; from there, all the operations are administered. Their rugs have the Indian essence despite their contemporary designs. They are a perfect blend of the art that has been around in India since the 16th Century and the one that appeals to modern-day customers. Their artisans specialize in hand-knotted rugs and even use the Gultarash technique to highlight the patterns on their carpets.
It was in 1996 that Radhe Rathi, based in the US, established Kaleen, India. At first, it was just a carpet trading business that eventually turned towards manufacturing, with units set up in Mirzapur, Panipat, and Bikaner. Taking the style of carpet weaving used in these places, Kaleen India has created a collection that ranges from authentic Indian art to more contemporary designs.
With its headquarters in the US and India, the company exports its carpets to over 50 countries. Their manufacturing is confined to the three original units, and from there, all the area rugs and broadloom carpets are brought to the homes of people living in some of the major cities worldwide.
Kalra’s Cottage Industry
It was in 1984 that the company took its first steps. At first, it was a Production and Export Unit, but now, it has become Kalra’s Cottage Industry, where dreams are woven into rugs. They have a showroom in the Fatehabad region in Agra, and from there, they have catered to the needs of millions of domestic and international customers looking for the perfect rug.
They have a community of over 1400 artisans who work from their cottages and create wonders that KCI brings to consumers’ homes. They specialize in hand-knotted rugs, both woolen and silk. Ranging from traditional to modern, their rugs are a must-have for all history enthusiasts visiting the Taj.
The company was established on the banks of Yamuna in Panipat in the year 1998. The company built its foundation with the help of a small group of weavers from obscure parts of this city. They now export to places like the US, Australia, the European Union, and the Middle East. Their artisans create area rugs and broadlooms, weaving around 21,000 square meters monthly. They use natural materials like Jute, Wool, and Cotton.
It is a family business established in 1925, given the name of Saif Carpets in 1995. With the help of local artisans, Saif Carpets strives to introduce people far and wide to the traditional Indian art of rug-making through their hand-crafted rugs. They ensure that the products they manufacture hold the highest standards of quality. They mainly focus on hand-woven carpets made of materials like cotton, wool, and viscose.
These were some of the top rug manufacturers in India. Their journeys may have started differently from each other in one way or another, but all of them have managed to create their name in the carpet industry, both in the domestic market as well as abroad. They all specialize in creating particular carpets and are known for their unique products and quality. You will find that no matter your needs, you can get the perfect rug for you if you compare the products of these rug manufacturers.